Oct. 11, 2006
HOME-AND-HOME WITH PILOTS: Gonzaga University, coming off perhaps its most solid weekend of the season, battles the University of Portland in a home-and-home series this week. The two Pacific Northwest rivals will meet Friday at Portland at 7:30 p.m., followed by a Sunday home match at 2 p.m.
HIGGINS THROWS UP GOOSE EGGS: Junior keeper Vito Higgins posted a pair of shutouts last weekend as Gonzaga University and 17th-ranked Santa Clara University played to a scoreless tie on Friday, then defeated Saint Mary's College 4-0 on Sunday for the Bulldogs inaugural West Coast Conference win of the season. Higgins had seven saves in Friday's tie with SCU and four saves in the win over SMC. The junior from Kailua, Hawai'i earned his third shutout of the season and the seventh of his career with the twin blankings. His three shutouts tie him with Josh Fouts for fifth on the Gonzaga single-season list, and his seven career shutouts moved Higgins, who is currently fourth on the all-time charts, closer to Mike McCarthy's 13 which currently ranks third all-time. Fouts and McCarthy are fellow Hawaiians.
SPREAD THE WEALTH: Four different players scored and seven players figured in the scoring for Gonzaga University in Sunday's 4-0 drubbing of Saint Mary's College. The Gonzaga offense scored four goals for the third time this season, the Bulldogs downing UNLV 4-1 at home in the season opener and Oregon State University 4-1 on the road. It was the first time the Bulldogs had scored four goals in a WCC match since defeating Loyola Marymount University 4-1 at home on Oct. 21, 2001. George Josten, John Reha, Grant Lundberg and Bryan Mullaney all scored goals, with Chris Hoyd, Tye Perdido and Austin Washington getting assists to account for the seven Bulldogs collecting points.
BEST DAY AS BULLDOG: Junior John Reha, who sat out the 2005 campaign after suffering a broken foot during the summer, had his best offensive day in Gonzaga University's 4-0 win on Sunday. He scored a goal and added two assists. He had a goal and an assist in the season opener this season against UNLV, and now has a pair of goals and four assists. His 8 points tie him for second on the team in scoring with Grant Lundberg. The native of Tacoma, Wash., and graduate of Curtis High had an assist as a freshman in 2003 and a goal as a sophomore in 2004 for his only other points prior to this season.
JOSTEN DROUGHT ENDS: With a goal against Saint Mary's College, Gonzaga University George Josten ended a stretch of five straight matches without a goal. He had six goals and three assists through the first six matches, but had just one assist over the next four matches as the Bulldogs suffered three shutouts in that stretch. He now has seven points and four assists for 18 points to lead the West Coast Conference in goals and points. His 24 career goals and 58 career points both rank fourth on the Bulldogs all-time lists.
BULLDOGS VS. PILOTS: Gonzaga University and the University of Portland renew their heated rivalry this week. The Bulldogs had the upper hand last season, taking a 1-0 home victory and battling to a 2-2 tie in Portland. But the Pilots still hold the series advantage at 17-6-1 heading into this week's home-and-home series. Gonzaga snapped a five-match losing streak against the Pilots with last year's victory, a streak that started with Portland's 1-0 win in the 2001 College Cup first round played at the University of Washington. Gonzaga's inaugural win in WCC play was a 2-1 home verdict in 1993, the Bulldogs first season of WCC competition.
ON THE INTERNET: All Gonzaga University home matches and most away matches can be followed via Gametracker on the internet at http://www.gozags.com. Gametracker is a feature of CSTV, the official web provider for Gonzaga. Go to the schedule at the bottom of the Gonzaga home page and look for the Gametracker link.
WEB CAST: Gonzaga University's match at Santa Clara University on Nov. 11 will be web cast on the West Coast Conference website. The WCC, in conjunction with CSTV Online, will web cast select contests throughout the year. The free streaming package is available at www.WCCsports.com.
THE THORARINSSON TALE OF THE TAPE: Gonzaga University head coach Einar Thorarinsson is 96-92-16 in his 12th season with the Bulldogs. His overall record is 219-143-29 that includes nine seasons across town at Whitworth College. After going 3-10-2 in his first season of 1995, the Bulldogs have had winning seasons in six of the last 10 seasons under Thorarinsson. His teams led the West Coast Conference in wins with a 14-4-0 record in 1997 and 12-4-2 mark in 1998, capturing WCC co-championships in each of those seasons. The Bulldogs were 9-5-2 in 2001, making their inaugural College Cup appearance. In 2005 Gonzaga went to the final match of the season with a chance to win the WCC title. He was accorded his third WCC Coach of the Year honor in 2005 to go with similar honors won in 1996-97 as he was the first coach in Gonzaga history to receive back-to-back WCC Coach of the Year accolades in any sport.